tv [untitled] July 18, 2011 4:00am-4:30am PDT
benefit corporations. we would have liked to have had a piece in the drafting of this legislation. we are trying to come up with ideas for solving this crisis in part funded and we want to help and come up with solutions to gather. i ask, as meredith did, can we put our energy and time and limited resources into working together for parks and open space? it will be more productive for all of us and i look forward to working with you over the next several months to bring more generous on support for our part to keep them open and accessible for all. thank you. supervisor avalos: thank you. if i call your name, please come forward. and please line up on the side after a call your name. >> good afternoon, supervisors. i support this initiative.
do you like my hat? sometimes we have to point out how ridiculous and idea is. i am referring to the idea of building a miniature golf course in golden gate park. this idea quickly sack, so we thought. i told people about it. they cannot believe i heard this. now the idea is back. the department stated this ballot initiative means that rec and park cannot build a miniature golf course and our parks. gosh, what it lost where park system. parks is not happy with this initiative. why is that? what is planned for our parks? i suggest that everyone here today, and i know that everyone here and people watching are here because they love their parks, asked rec and park directly, what are their five-, 10-, and 20-year plans for the parks. get them to write it down and
sign it. this initiative is shining a light on issues and problems that have been hit in, and deserves -- that have been hidden, and it deserves to go forward so would find out what features plan for our parks. thank you very much. supervisor avalos: thank you. next speaker, please? >> hi, my name is george. good afternoon. for years, san francisco has deferred maintenance on all types of infrastructure like roads, water maintenance, and parks. fully 80% of the deferred money went into salaries and benefits. yet something like the recreation and park department keeps sending revenue back to the city general fund. voters do not want all of the money to be paid to the parks to be continued to be deferred. we'll try. we're tired of paying for services that we no longer
receive. don't ask us to pay for the park's twice. the best the park service that we have already paid for. stopping the parks a low priority and start giving them a full budget. free the parts from the inefficiency of our city government. -- free the parks from the inefficiency of our city government. a stop using their rectum as a criteria. -- stop using favoritism as a criteria. stop making the will of your contributor more important than the voice of the people. i have noticed that the parks seem to be more and more favorable to the people donating to them than listening to the people that are giving them tax money. i think it is vital that parks for the public be passed. thank you. supervisor avalos: thank you. ext. speaker, please?
>> good afternoon, suzanne. i am with the save stow lake boat house organization. it go to the website to get the real story that the media will not. because phil ginsberg keep planting puff pieces and the media instead of the truth. the public deserves the truth about the parks. it is very disingenuous for mr. ginsberg talked-about outpour he is. he is going for a lease at the boat house that loses money. he is giving great discounts of revenue to an out-of-state fender with no boating experience. when he talks about children and families that we run at the city because of these things, what is he going to be one recreational boating operation we have four children in this city but the meaning it so and out of state
souvenir chain can take over the one and only historic still like but house. --stow lake boathouse. we have been trying to work with parks so long. the director is stubborn and not interested in working with the public. he works with those where rich and powerful, and if you are poor, you will lose out. i support this initiative, and you should also. the people are listening and watching. thank you. >> andrea o'leary. i will try to speak from the point of view of somebody who is not involved in a lot of the politics of this. i think in my neighborhood, a lot of people are worried, and we have reason to be. i willi can give you two exampl.
one is one we renovated art park and had a surplus. we said we want something in return. that is that rec and park will give us the programs they have been promising for 30 years. they will not do that. instead, they are redesigning to turn our clubhouse in to staff offices. we panicked and had huge community meetings. we want access to our clubhouse. a couple of us were sitting in ginzberg's office, and he comes up with the idea of turning our historic conservatory into a coffeehouse. they are serious about this. we never really thought they would. i have been to at least four of these meetings. its staff had come with lots of
great ideas -- there are all these people who will sign an and new -- and mou and provide these exercises for us. but they do not know who they are. they do not know where they are. they have no suggestions. i think what people are worried about is if we do not stop this, we will not be able to turn the clock back. supervisor avalos: i am going to read a few more calls -- more cards. [names are called] sorry if i do not pronounce your name correctly.
>> my name is dawn holliday. i book the artists for strictly bluegrass. i am an owner of the american music hall. this year, i was almost forced to close due to a poorly written ordinance. the big language is troubling to me because of my experience with something that was vaguely written. they language restricting what can and cannot be done was detrimental to us and the 90 employees i have. after 20 years of business and being shut down for two weeks, it hurt. go back. look at the language. work on it. it was painful. that is what my staff had to go through. it is hard to comply with regulations you have no standard
for. that is all i am saying. i love our festival. i love the festival's that are there. i would throw myself in front of a train for it. thank you. supervisor avalos: it is a great festival. thank you. >> i am margaret reed. i and the staff supervisor for local government, minus the health care works -- health care folks. every year, you and supervisors
have a choice as the city budget. every year, the rec and park commission since you a budget with cuts in it, and a budget from the department that says this is how we are going to raise money. every chance, you can say no and not support the budget with this item. unfortunately, we do not get the know. we get, "i am sorry. i know it is hard." the recreation and park commission has a choice. it has a choice to say we are not going to sacrifice staff. every year except this year, it says no to us, to the workers, to the citizens of san francisco. we have a choice right now. i do not like this legislation.
i think it could be better. you have a choice coming up. you have a choice in the budget. we have $15 million to $30 million in ad backs, but we cannot come up with all we need to fund the unused clubhouses. $3 million. you cannot figure out a way in your power to put that in the budget? that is where we want to come out on this. >> my name is lori liederman. i am a recently retired union representative.
the recreation and parks department has been gradually but systematically taking public land and facilities out of the public domain through a variety of means, including increased fees, and the leasing of public spaces, making those facilities available to the public. that is why this ordinance has been introduced. it is a modest measure. it does not attempt to turn back that which has already been taken away, some would say unfortunately. they are not prevented from charging rental fees. it does keep free what is currently free. it would stop the further conversion of public parks and recreational facilities to private spaces. recreation and parks has responded by wringing their hands and amping up if you're mongering propaganda campaign. they say it cannot raise money this way, there will be layoffs
of custodians. they already laid off the recreational directors. fear is not a viable foundation for public policy. these are hard times for working people. i spent 25 years as a union representative and i take layoffs seriously. but that threat is the most overused threat in management's pocket. it gets pulled out and waved around to undermine resistance to other harmful agendas that are not in the interest of workers or the general public. entry fees and leases do not create jobs. only steady streams of significant revenue to taxes can do that. send and siskins have always worked to support public safety -- san franciscans have always worked to support public safety and the schools. why would we do that if you're going to double dip?
>> i have lived here since 1973 in san francisco. >> i have been shocked as i have learned more about how the parks department is run. parks people talk about parks department property. after they fired all the recreation directors, they hired marketing people to market the parks. parks are not in venues, as they are described. they are not prime real-estate, platforms for advertising or special interest promotions. they belong not to the department, but to citizens. we paid taxes and support them. we support roads, libraries, and
fire departments. if the department needs more money, it should go to the people and demanded, not to corporations. of course they are marketable, but they are not for sale. you could get lots of money if you rented everything out are least it out. here is something on the website that actually invites people to compete for spectacular sights, beautiful venues, fantastic events that include a comic locations. that is why there are parks. they are for us to enjoy. they should go to the people with their own initiative. do you want parks to become the cash cow in these hard times? creativity will kick in. we all support our parks. we think ginsburg should ask for more money from the general fund and not anticipate by being so proud of getting cuts every
year. supervisor avalos: perfect timing. thank you. next speaker, please. >> good afternoon. i do remember the 60's. and i remember when everything in the park was free, everything. the arboretum is the last free thing, and i am getting ready to change myself to the gates and to a hunger fast. i am going to tell you what i do not like about this ordinance. it does not roll back the damage by this come modification of the commons. listening to a lot of well- meaning people who sound intelligent and care about the park, i do not understand it. i am baffled. it is so simple. the parts should be free.
the recreation facilities should be accessible. this is such a modest measure. it does not do nearly enough, as far as i am concerned. but there is almost hysterical opposition. what are they afraid of? they might discover call -- coal under strawberry hill or natural gas. they could not be set out to do -- lease it out to do frakking. i will say in the spirit of the steel day "liberte pour l'e stattate."
>> let me say foremost i would love to take that offer up and visit fell off at 3:00 a.m. on a tuesday for free in one of his clubhouses. unfortunately, the bottom line is it has been year after year underfunded and defunded. the start of public-private partnerships were to try to leverage those resources we each get with what we can do, and work together. we offer free programming about 11 hours a day. the only requirement is being a resident of the city and county of san francisco. we do robotics programs, cooking programs. we have a drumming program i am pleased with. our ability to do that and work
with the parks is in my mind the great strength of the public- private partnerships. we continue to strive to be more open and accountable to the community. thank you very much. >> my name is elias moussa. what is clear is we have a budget crisis. as far as the parks have gone, the policy response seems to be one that in the past couple of years has started to dismantle the relationship. this is a radical policy response that is basically
segregating the park resources by means of ability to pay. it is an end to price strategy. this enterprise policy can work. enterprises can be great, efficient policies. they are not fair and that are not equitable. it is not designed to be fair and equitable. it is designed to maximize and extract unfair profits. that is not what a government does. the people who did not choose this policy -- it was foisted on us by ideology by the current administration. this administration is choosing to go in the way of the
enterprise. we need to augment our self against it and we need to vote on it. this is a simple measure that will draw a line. as supervisors, at your job, as i understand it, is to balance between them and us. please do not shirk the responsibility. >> walter paulson. ♪ you've got to have parks miles of parks you have to fix every park a good budget starts give it some heart but you've gotta have parks i hear laughter in the park
rain with a better change i love a better way with the happy part i feel inside we run under a tree thanks to what the rules committee, it's going to be free there in our park, love under stormy skies we want to hear park laughter in the change her read down to the birthday stone pyknic -- hurry down to the birthday stone picnic there will be laughter and take -- cake and fine wine ♪ >> did he earned a spot as an opening act?
never followed children and dogs. i am glad we are not subject to this ordinance. i do want to say that in working for the last four years, the park has shown so much -- some things you do not recognize it immediately. i think what it took as many years to develop the concept for this one show -- the way the internet was concerned with ideas and innovation, ordinances that say words like permanent and forever scare me a lot. i think it is very important that we allow activities and
good ideas to flourish in the parks, particularly in tough economic times. when we started a music festival, we had no idea that it would turn into a wine and music festival that provided 2500 jobs a day that brought in more than $50 million in revenues to the city of san francisco. we are not subject to this, but i think it is important that when somebody else has an idea for the park's that the wording does not affect the ability for good ideas. i have learned a lot today about the intent, and i think it is admirable. but i would be careful to limit good ideas for the parks.
>> my name is jackie battle and i work for san francisco recon park. i have taken the day off to speak concerning the rec centers. having all of our centers open would be ideal. as you know, we are still in the recession and the city is dealing with a budget shortfall. if this initiative passed on the november ballot, it would handicap the recreation department and force more layoffs. i worked in the omi neighborhood at the rec center. with the new organization of our department, we have been able to do more with less. i have been able to offer programs such as robotics. that increases u.s. technology skills and engineering.
we have a variety of dance class is for all ages, such as hip- hop, as the state board, a karate class is. our summer camps do have these. we do offer scholarships for these programs. in the community i worked in, there is a larger range of challenges. some people need a 100% scholarship. some people only need a small scholarship. 80% of the participants in our summer camps have 100% scholarships. i have stated before it would be a hardship in our department if we have to open the recreation centers with no funding. >> i am the interim executive
director of san francisco pride. i have very serious concerns about how this legislation is written. i understand that the intent has been clarified that it does not include nonprofits that use rec and park space to host our events. my concern is that the programming exemption is now worded in the same language as the exclusion that says all this will be precluded. our event is not necessarily considered programing in terms of how this might be considered if passed. this concerns all the events of our city that we might be in a little bit of a legal challenge if this legislation does become law. it would be on us to have to litigate. our only defense of the framers
intend. as worded, it is clear that we need to reconsider the wording. it would put a very serious burden on those who depend on this space. we need to be cautious about understanding that from our intent is not always going to save us in a legal battle. i think this puts us in a very bad spot. >> i live in supervisor of the los's district -- supervisor avalos's district and worked in supervisor came -- work in supervisor kim's district. i appreciate your initiative regarding open up to the public.
there does need to be a lot more work. i came in here not knowing enough what all of this is about. after hearing speakers and supervisors, i feel a lot more needs to be done with this initiative. this should not just go out to voters. the south of market is a neighborhood that richly deserves it. it needs to have its day open. it is a tough area. there is nowe were let go. i work with part-time people to keep it welcome for people to come into. i really agree with the place being open.